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UD Low Down: Open Mic x V&A x GUAP

For one night only, UD Open Mic moved to the V&A with our friends at GUAP for another epic Friday Late on August 25th, as part of a season of events and displays marking the 75th anniversary of the arrival of the HMT Empire Windrush.
Host, Nayana AB

Having invited performers of Caribbean heritage to apply to perform, we had a hard job selecting the 10 acts for the night – a big thank you to all who got in touch! Selected to step up and represent were Ashaine White, SKYE, Dwills, Sweep, Anicah, Ziön x Siobhán, Deacon, Shanteh, Devante Vaughan & Reptile B.

Video: @hya.bel
Music: @ginka.tmp ’To Do Better’
Skye, Neo-Soul/Alt R&B.
Open Mic audience, V&A
SHANTÉH, artist, songwriter and producer from South London is no stranger to the music industry, having provided vocals and penmanship for stars such as Emeli Sandé, Lukas Graham, Brandon Beal, Jahméne Douglas and Ann Nesby, she is now one of the lead vocalists for South East London Afro Jazz collective Steam Down and lead vocalist for the UK Colombian jazz collective, Mestizo.
Being of Jamaican heritage, SHANTÉH grew up listening to a lot of reggae, lovers rock and jungle which has influenced her sound, some of which shines through especially with her collaborations with dynamic London Jungle duo, 4am Kru and Colombian wordsmith, N.Hardem.
Sweep bringing the Dancehall vibes
Nayana AB, Open Mic Host

“It was an honour to be able to host the Open Mic for this event,” Nayana AB explains, “allowing me to meet and listen to artists of Caribbean descent who are insanely talented. 75 years have passed since the HMT Empire Windrush ship arrived in Britain on the 22nd of June 1948 and it is beautiful to be able to honour the anniversary in such an iconic place. There is nothing like seeing black excellence being celebrated and welcomed into spaces with such a rich history.”

London-based artists Ziön and Siobhán are a musical force. Blending R&B, pop, and hip-hop, they fearlessly experiment across genres, creating a sound uniquely their own.
Ashaine White, North london based alt/grunge soul singer-songwriter/guitarist/ harmony badgyal.
Anicah’s saxophone journey began in secondary school and since then her talents have taken herto renowned venues like the Barbican, Museum of London and now, the V&A.

With GUAP having programmed the entire space, other highlights included music by Home Sweet Home, fashion displays, dancehall workshops, a carnival village showcase, a screening by Hairouna Film Festival, carnival costume making, panel talks, a children of Windrush display and much more.

Deacon: A Rap/Hip-Hop artist with a Message of Wellbeing.
Deacon found his passion for music through his involvement with the Hip Hop Shakespeare Company, a unique theatre group that blends hip-hop and Shakespearean influences.
Devante Vaughan, an African and Caribbean Croydon native on a journey of self.
Venus, a UD Open Mic fave who stepped up to cover for Reptile B (get well soon bro)!

Here’s hoping GUAP do another V&A Friday Late in 2024!

UD Open Mic returns to Talent House, 3 Sugar House Lane, London E15 2QS on Thursday 12th October. Email openmic@udmusic.org if you’d like to apply. Please sign up for a free ticket over at UDtickets.com.

Photography: JH Visuals

JHVisuals, also known as Joey, is a photographer. She specialises mainly in the events space, with a focus on community building and music, and she works with individuals on building their visions through portraiture.

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